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Without a King [Jephthah] (Judges 11 & 12)

Alan Hannah

May 28 & 29, 2022

 

16All Scripture is inspired by God and is useful to teach us what is true and to make us realize what is wrong in our lives. It corrects us when we are wrong and teaches us to do what is right. [2 Timothy 3:16 NLT]

 

6Again the Israelites did evil in the LORD’s sight. They served the images of Baal and Ashtoreth, and the gods of Aram, Sidon, Moab, Ammon, and Philistia. They abandoned the LORD and no longer served him at all. 7So the LORD burned with anger against Israel, and he turned them over to the Philistines and the Ammonites, 8who began to oppress them that year. For eighteen years they oppressed all the Israelites east of the Jordan River in the land of the Amorites (that is, in Gilead). [Judges 10:6-7 NLT]

 

18The leaders of Gilead said to each other, “Whoever attacks the Ammonites first will become ruler over all the people of Gilead.” [Judges 10:18 NLT]

 

1Now Jephthah of Gilead was a great warrior. He was the son of Gilead, but his mother was a prostitute. 2Gilead’s wife also had several sons, and when these half-brothers grew up, they chased Jephthah off the land. “You will not get any of our father’s inheritance,” they said, “for you are the son of a prostitute.” 3So Jephthah fled from his brothers and lived in the land of Tob. Soon he had a band of worthless rebels following him. [Judges 11:1-3 NLT]

 

9Jephthah said to the elders, “Let me get this straight. If I come with you and if the LORD gives me victory over the Ammonites, will you really make me ruler over all the people?” 10“The LORD is our witness,” the elders replied. “We promise to do whatever you say.” [Judges 11:9-10 NLT]

 

29At that time the Spirit of the LORD came upon Jephthah, and he went throughout the land of Gilead and Manasseh, including Mizpah in Gilead, and from there he led an army against the Ammonites. 30And Jephthah made a vow to the LORD. He said, “If you give me victory over the Ammonites, 31I will give to the LORD whatever comes out of my house to meet me when I return in triumph. I will sacrifice it as a burnt offering.” [Judges 11:29-31 NLT]

 

34When Jephthah returned home to Mizpah, his daughter came out to meet him, playing on a tambourine and dancing for joy. She was his one and only child; he had no other sons or daughters. 35When he saw her, he tore his clothes in anguish. “Oh, my daughter!” he cried out. “You have completely destroyed me! You’ve brought disaster on me! For I have made a vow to the LORD, and I cannot take it back.” [Judges 11:34-35 NLT]

 

When we are more influenced by the world that by God, we will rely on worldly practices to accomplish God’s purposes, and the results are tragic.

 

35They have built pagan shrines to Baal in the valley of Ben-Hinnom, and there they sacrifice their sons and daughters to Molech. I have never commanded such a horrible deed; it never even crossed my mind to command such a thing. What an incredible evil, causing Judah to sin so greatly! [Jeremiah 32:35 NLT]

 

1The LORD said to Moses, 2“Give the people of Israel these instructions, which apply both to native Israelites and to the foreigners living in Israel. “If any of them offer their children as a sacrifice to Molech, they must be put to death. The people of the community must stone them to death. 3I myself will turn against them and cut them off from the community, because they have defiled my sanctuary and brought shame on my holy name by offering their children to Molech. [Leviticus 20:1-3 NLT]

 

When we are more influenced by the world that by God, we will rely on worldly practices to accomplish God’s purposes, and the results are tragic.

 

1And so, dear brothers and sisters, I plead with you to give your bodies to God because of all he has done for you. Let them be a living and holy sacrifice—the kind he will find acceptable. This is truly the way to worship him. 2Don’t copy the behavior and customs of this world, but let God transform you into a new person by changing the way you think. Then you will learn to know God’s will for you, which is good and pleasing and perfect. [Romans 12:1-2 NLT]

 

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